17 Wonderful Things to Do in Asakusa for First-Timers

Things to Do in Asakusa

This guide will show you the best things to do in Asakusa, Tokyo. It includes the most beautiful attractions that you shouldn’t miss during your trip.

In Asakusa, you get to enjoy the charm of a historical vibe. This area is full of with traditional shops, ancient temples, and historic shopping streets. You’ll truly fall in love with this place.

Let’s start exploring the wonderful things you can see and do during your trip to Asakusa! Be sure to add this place into your itinerary. 🙂

1. Start the Adventure at Sensoji Temple

Sensoji Temple in Asakusa, showcasing its vibrant red architecture and large lantern
The ever-historical Sensoji Temple

One of the top things to do in Asakusa is to explore the Sensoji Temple.

This famous cultural spot is visited by millions of travellers around the world because of its long-running history.

As you navigate the oldest temple in the capital city of Tokyo, you will discover a lot of incredible sights.

View of the iconic Five-Story Pagoda and Kaminarimon Gate
Majestic scenes from the temple complex

There are 3 main attractions you should see when you go to this beautiful temple in Asakusa.

  • Kaminarimon Gate: The first gate of the Sensoji Complex features a large red lantern, it is often called the “thunder gate”. Remember to take a great photo there, it’s worth the effort!
  • Hozomon Gate: The two-storey second gate of Sensoji houses precious assets like lanterns, statues, and large sandals, making it an ideal backdrop for photos.
  • Five-Story Pagoda: This 53.32-meter tall structure not only mesmerizes but also symbolizes the universe’s five elements: land, fire, wind, water, and sky.

2. Go Shopping at Nakamise Shopping Street

Nakamise Shopping Street with busy stalls selling Japanese souvenirs and snacks
The busy Nakamise Shopping Street

A recommended activity to do while at Asakusa is exploring Nakamise Shopping Street. Here, you can find a variety of unique things.

This historic shopping lane dates back to 1716, making it one of Japan’s oldest shopping areas.

Wander around the 250-meter street that comes with a total of 89 stores. Most of these are selling street food, souvenirs, and personalized crafts.

Colorful display of masks, lantern-shaped magnets, and good-luck ring bells at a Nakamise
An array of local products

Look into different stalls and check some authentic Japanese souvenirs. There are plenty of masks, lantern magnets, and key chains available.

Plus, you’ll find good-luck ring bells, which are perfect gifts to your loved ones.

Continue with your exploration and uncover some traditional Japanese paper fans. These are very practical when exploring around Asakusa under the heat of the sun.

A number of shops also sell Zori sandals, which are considered old-style Japanese footwear.

3. Enjoying Eating Kibi Dango

Kibi Dango, a sweet Japanese snack
Savor the sweet delight of traditional Japanese Kibi Dango treats!

When you go to Asakusa, one of the street foods you should try there is Kibi Dango. You can find Kibi Dango at Nakamise Shopping Street.

Take a bite of this traditional rice cake that is made from mochi rice flour and millet.

This easy-to-munch food is not just tasty but also cheap, costing just 400 yen for 5 skewers.

4. See the beauty of Asakusa Jinja

Scenic view of Asakusa Jinja, a historic Shinto shrine
The traditional vibes of Asakusa Jinja

Asakusa Jinja is very special because it’s one of the two buildings that survived the massive bombing of Tokyo during the Second World War.

As a cultural treasure of Japan, you can definitely feel the nostalgic atmosphere surrounding the shrine.

There are plenty of amazing sites to capture here. The most popular of them all are the portable shrines, which are called Mikoshi.

Take a closer look at the Mikoshi shrines. These are often used during the Sanja Festival, a wild and famous Shinto festival in the country.

5. Dress Up with a Kimono

Wearing a stunning kimono dress in Asakusa
Some colorful Kimono attires to brighten up your day – Photo by Klook

Trying on a kimono is among the best things you can do when visiting Asakusa. It adds a delightful cultural touch to your experience.

This traditional costume is considered a national identity among the locals.

Hence, wearing one will certainly make your trip more fulfilling and unforgettable.

Grab this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and walk around the historic streets of Asakusa. This is such a remarkable way to blend with the locals!

Array of kimono choices
An array of kimono choices awaits, ready for you to select.

Though Kimonos are known to be expensive, there’s nothing to worry about because you can actually rent them for a few hours.

So, if you want to wear one, it’s highly suggested that you rent from this shop. Offering a wide range of options, it’s easy to pick something that will match your style.

Plus, they can provide unique hairstyling for women.

Their staff are also very friendly and accommodating. Just don’t forget to reserve early because they are often fully booked.

6. Capture the Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center

Unique architecture of Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center from outside
The eye-catching exterior of Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center

If you’re looking for an iconic structure to photograph, head to Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center.

From the outside, this building looks like stacks of boxes. Because of its unique architectural style, it is one of the most unique photographed spots in Asakusa.

So, be sure to take photos of this spectacular structure.

Panoramic cityscape view from the observation deck of Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center
A remarkable view of the city

Make your way to the 8th floor of the building and see the best view of Asakusa city from the observation deck.

From the top, you will catch some gorgeous sights of the Nakamise, Five-Story Pagoda, and Sensoji Temple.

7. Visit the Tokyo Skytree

Iconic Tokyo Skytree tower, soaring high above the cityscape
The spectacular Tokyo Skytree

Although there are many things to do in Asakusa, I think Tokyo Skytree deserves to be one of your priorities.

As the tallest building in Japan, this structure is no doubt very impressive. Even from afar, you can feel its uniqueness and elegance.

Marvel at the beautiful scenery of the entire Tokyo area, whether during the day or at night.

Spectacular aerial view from the observation deck of Tokyo Skytree
Picturesque views from the top – Photo by Guilhem Vellut

Tokyo Skytree offers two main observation decks namely:

  • Tembo Galleria: It’s the highest observation deck in Japan, standing at 450 meters high. This place offers breathtaking cityscape views. You can even see famous landmarks like Sensoji Temple and the Five-Story Pagoda. Try spotting Mount Fuji too!
  • Tembo Deck: At 350 meters high, offers three distinctive viewing levels: Floor350, showcasing the Skytree Cafe and Tembo Deck Commemorative Photography; Floor345, where you can enjoy breathtaking views while dining or shopping at the panoramic restaurant and shop; and Floor340, home to a marvelous glass floor, offering unique experiences at every level.

Tip: Book the Tokyo Skytree tickets here so you will save time from the long queues. Additionally, buying your tickets online is much cheaper compared to purchasing them on-site.

8. Grab a bite of the Matcha Gelato at Suzukien Asakusa

Delectable matcha ice cream at Suzukien Asakusa
A unique yet flavorful gelato – Photo by @tokyotocha

Are you a self-confessed matcha lover?

Visit Suzukien Asakusa for top-notch matcha ice cream.

They offer a unique range of matcha gelato with seven intensity levels.

Try mixing level 7 with level 5 for an amazing blend of herbal and sweet flavours!

9. Navigate around Shin-Nakamise Shopping Street

Asakusa's Shin-Nakamise Shopping Street comes alive with a lively scene, featuring colorful stalls and enthusiastic shoppers
The jam-packed Shin-Nakamise Shopping Street

Shin-Nakamise is a new shopping street in Asakusa, running perpendicular to Nakamise Street.

Go over the local stores that are often much bigger compared to the older Nakamise Street.

When you walk around the busy lane, you’ll discover many shops selling clothes, shoes, and even ceramics.

Not only that, but there are also many restaurants here that make it a great place for your lunch or dinner.

10. Spend Time at Asakusa Denboin-Dori

Charming Asakusa Denboin-Dori street, lined with traditional shops and lanterns
The classical ambiance Asakusa Denboin-Dori

Asakusa Denboin-Dori Street boasts old-style charm with distinctive Edo-period architecture.

Stretching for 200 meters, this historical street offers many great spots for photos, including unique stores selling crafts and delicious food.

During your exploration, you will come across picturesque restaurants in the area, many of which offer delicious meals such as soba and ramen.

So, if you want an ancient-like shopping and dining adventure, add this to your list.

11. Ride a Rickshaw

Traditional Japanese rickshaw with a friendly rickshaw puller in Asakusa
A one-of-a-kind Rickshaw adventure – Photo by Klook

For a unique Asakusa experience, you can tour around the area with a rickshaw.

This is one of the most distinctive ways to see Asakusa’s iconic tourist spots like Kaminarimon Gate and Denboin Street.

The rickshaw person is very accommodating and is well-versed in English. This makes it easier for you to communicate and get better insights of the historical district.

There are several Rickshaw tour packages on offer―30 minutes tour, 1-hour tour, and 2 hours tour. Check out here for the rickshaw tour packages.

12. Take a Snap of the iconic Asahi Beer Hall

Distinctive Asahi Beer Hall with its golden flame sculpture on top
The well-known Asahi Beer Hall

Asahi Beer Hall is definitely one of the most famous photo backdrops in the district. This renowned local beer company is known for its Asahi Super Dry beers.

Even if there are many giant structures scattered around the Asakusa area, this beer hall is such a sight to see.

Admire the gold exteriors of the building and use it as a photography backdrop, along with the Tokyo Skytree.

13. Don’t Miss the Unagi from Unatoto Asakusa

Mouthwatering unagi (eel) dishes at Unatoto Asakusa
The delectable Unatoto Asakusa

Are you on the hunt for an exciting yet equally satisfying meal?

Head over to Unatoto Asakusa and try some grilled eels.

Japanese believe eels or unagi improves one’s vitality. So, if you want the best among the many Unagi restaurants in Asakusa, visit Unatoto.

You can try their top-seller dish, which is the Unagi Freshwater Eel dish. The price range is just around 500 yen to 1500 yen.

14. Walk your Way to Kappabashi Street

Giant chef mascot atop a building on Kappabashi Street
Some unique finds at Kappabashi Street

Sandwiched between Asakusa and Ueno, Kappabashi Street is the place to go for all sorts of Japanese kitchenware.

Look for that giant chef mascot on top of a building, and from there, you will uncover the ever-famous Kappabashi.

Kappabashi Street showcasing an array of kitchen utensils and tools
A colorful assortment of kitchen essentials

Scan through the amazing display of kitchen items and bring home some new stuff.

With its incredible collection, this destination is undoubtedly a must-visit for kitchenware lovers.

15. Try the Tempura at Tendon Tenya

Indulge in the delicious Asakusa tempura dishes at Tendon Tenya
Treat yourself to the crunch and flavour of Tendon Tenya

For those seeking exceptional things to eat in Asakusa, Tendon Tenya is a prime choice.

The restaurant is a favourite among tourists for its affordable prices, gaining further popularity with visits from celebrities like Lady Gaga and Justin Bieber.

It is famous for its main dish, Tendon, which is a bowl of tempura served over steaming rice.

English menu is available, making this restaurant more appealing to foreign diners.

Consider trying their “All-Star Tendon”, priced at 720 yen, which includes rice, miso soup, prawn, squid, mushroom, and green beans.

16. Zooming Through Asakusa in Go-Karts

Adventurous go-karting experience on the streets of Asakusa
Navigate Asakusa’s lively streets with exciting Go-Kart rides! – Photo by Klook

Taking a Go-Kart in Asakusa is thrilling. You’ll navigate through buzzing streets.

Dress up in your favourite character’s costume for the ride. As you drive through the streets, enjoy unique and exhilarating views of the city.

With experienced guides leading the way, you’ll smoothly tour through popular landmarks, soaking in Asakusa’s vibrant energy.

It’s not just a ride; it’s an unforgettable adventure! You can reserve your Go-Kart ride here!

17. Relax at the Water Bus

Relaxing water bus cruise on the picturesque Sumida River
The panoramic sights of the Sumida River – Photo by Klook

There’s no better way to cap off your trip than to take the Tokyo Mizube Line (Water Bus).

This is a scenic water ride that offers amazing city views. Here, you can just unwind and capture the beautiful surroundings.

To board the cruise, you have to go to Asakusa pier. And then, you will get off at Odaiba.

My Suggested Itinerary for Asakusa

To assist you in planning your Asakusa itinerary, I have personally created suggested half-day and full-day itineraries for you.

Hopefully, this will save you time in organizing your trip.

If you stay in Tokyo for several days, you should read my Tokyo itinerary here that will give you a lot of ideas of how to spend your time efficiently in the city.

Option 1: Half-Day (7 Hours – Morning to Afternoon)

Asakusa Half Day Itinerary (Morning Session)
Option 1 – Half Day Itinerary (From morning until afternoon)
  • 10:00 AM – Dress Kimono
  • 11:00 AM – Rickshaw Ride
  • 11:30 AM – Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center
  • 12:00 PM – Capture the Asahi Beer Hall
  • 12:10 PM – Tendon Tenya
  • 12:40 PM – Nakamise Shopping Street
  • 1:30 PM – Kibi Dango
  • 1:40 PM – Sensoji Temple
  • 2:30 PM – Asakusa Jinja
  • 2:40 PM – Return Kimono
  • 3:00 PM – Tokyo Skytree

Option 2: Half-Day (7 Hours – Afternoon to Night)

Asakusa Half Day Itinerary (Afternoon Session)
Option 2 – Half Day Itinerary (From afternoon until night)
  • 1:00 PM – Street Go-Kart Experience
  • 2:00 PM – Suzukien Asakusa
  • 2:20 PM – Asakusa Jinja
  • 2:30 PM – Sensoji Temple
  • 3:00 PM – Asakusa Denboin-Dori
  • 3:30 PM – Nakamise Shopping Street
  • 3:50 PM – Kibi Dango
  • 4:00 PM – Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center
  • 4:50 PM – Capture the Asahi Beer Hall
  • 5:00 PM – Unatoto Asakusa / Tendon Tenya
  • 6:00 PM – Tokyo Skytree

Option 3: Full-Day (10 Hours)

Asakusa Full Day Itinerary Option 1
Option 3 – Full Day Itinerary
  • 10:00 AM – Dress Kimono
  • 11:00 AM – Asakusa Jinja
  • 11:20 AM – Sensoji Temple
  • 12:20 PM – Suzukien Asakusa
  • 12:50 PM – Asakusa Denboin-Dori
  • 1:20 PM – Tendon Tenya
  • 1:50 PM – Shin-Nakamise Shopping Street
  • 2:50 PM – Nakamise Shopping Street
  • 3:40 PM – Kibi Dango
  • 3:50 PM – Return Kimono
  • 4:10 PM – Capture the Asahi Beer Hall
  • 4:20 PM – Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center
  • 5:00 PM – Unatoto Asakusa
  • 6:00 PM – Tokyo Skytree

Where to Visit Next

Other than going to Asakusa, there are several interesting places to visit in Tokyo.

For instance, you can tour around Shinjuku and then explore the famous Tokyo DisneySea with your family and friends. These destinations are very popular and highly recommended for first-time visitors.

Things to Do in Asakusa (Map)

Asakusa Map
Click here to see an interactive map of Asakusa

For easy reference to the perfect things to do and dining spots in Asakusa, you can refer to the map provided above.

I hope the map I created helps save you research time and makes your trip more convenient.

Train Station Exits

Asakusa Train Station Exits

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